Enjoy college hoops for breakfast Friday as the Belfast Classic continues with undefeated San Francisco playing Stephen F. Austin. It's an 8 a.m. ET tipoff from the SSE Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The Dons (6-0) are coming off a 19-point win over Dartmouth, while the Lumberjacks are 4-1, with their only loss at the hands of Miami from the ACC. Sportsbooks list San Francisco as an eight-point favorite. The over-under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 138.5 in the latest Stephen F. Austin vs. San Francisco odds. Before you make any San Francisco vs. Stephen F. Austin picks, see what college basketball prodigy Michael Rusk has to say.
The 25-year-old Rusk built his name by exploiting flaws in public betting. With his economics and statistics background, Rusk uses multiple algorithms pooling with recency bias to produce profitable picks. Fading the public is paying off again for Rusk, who enters Friday having nailed five of his past seven college basketball picks.
Now, Rusk has spotted a huge edge on one side of the Stephen F. Austin-San Francisco spread. He's sharing his pick only over at SportsLine.
Rusk knows the Dons, of the West Coast Conference, have been impressive thus far. Five of their six wins have come by at least 19 points. Out of 351 Division I teams, San Francisco ranks 82nd with 81.0 points per game and has five players averaging in double-figures. Senior forward Matt McCarthy (12.5 points per game, 9.5 rebounds per game) is dominant around the basket, shooting 68 percent.
But just because the Dons are rolling and have covered three of four games this season doesn't mean they'll do it again against a team they've never faced.
Not only have the Lumberjacks won four of the past five Southland Conference titles, they've also upset West Virginia and VCU in recent NCAA Tournaments. The Lumberjacks are blessed with an experienced trio of all-conference performers: senior guard Shannon Bogues, junior swingman Kevon Harris and senior forward TJ Holyfield. Bogues averages 15.4 points and 4.4 assists while shooting 46 percent from beyond the arc.
The Lumberjacks are used to being overlooked and have covered nine of their past 12 games against teams with .600-plus winning percentages.
We can tell you Rusk is leaning under, but his much stronger play is against the spread. He has identified a crucial x-factor that he says makes his side a must-back. He's sharing what it is, and who to back, only at SportsLine.
Who wins Stephen F. Austin vs. San Francisco? And what crucial x-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see which side you need to be all over Friday, all from the college basketball prodigy who's nailed five of his last seven picks.